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Folks Of Interest Anybody Else have a Bolt hoard or Bolt hoarding problem?

Discussion in 'The Hokey Ass Message Board' started by LilBlue82, Jan 7, 2017.

  1. My Dad has kept a lot, under the mind-set "They've only been used once". 20 years ago I stocked a bunch of bins with new grade 5 and grade 8 hardware. Never should have done it, as I still have half of it, and their lengths that just won't get used. Now I buy as I need it.
    Had a friend who bought a guys garage out to settle a divorce. I got three or four milk crates of oddball fasteners, heim's, clevises.....I finally got that whittled down.
    Joined: Jun 25, 2012
    Posts: 646
    from Salina, KS

    I wish I had as many as grandpa does....& some others.
    Anytime I go to the Hardware store & start seeing $.15,$.20,$.25 Cents each, I plan on hoarding more & more collection.
  3. I assemble and maintain restored cars for a museum that actually get driven. "Real" bolts are a commodity. I've dipped into my personal stuff to help builds along. Also had bolts made for concours cars where reproductions don't exist.

    Some old cars had no markings so I've spent time on a sander making new bolts into old bolts. Now that I recognize factory markings, I'm possessed with looking at any stray hardware.

    As far as my personal stuff, I lived 50 miles from the hardware store for many years but was a hardcore gearhead hobbyist. Saved every nut and bolt from builds, part-outs and I'll buy garage sale hardware cans. Scored plenty of stainless at beach area sales.

    Made 60 pine boxes that are sorted and labeled. Each holds a gallon. Some have dividers. I'm a junkyard car builder so recycled bolts are ok for me most of the time. One box has "specialty" bolts which has saved the day.

    Don't think my kids will want it when I'm gone along with a bunch of other "cool shit"
    michael knight, tb33anda3rd and pat59 like this.
  4. 56sedandelivery
    Joined: Nov 21, 2006
    Posts: 6,187


    I guess I'm NUTS when it comes to nuts................and bolts...............and washers, et al. But, I don't keep them in 5 gallon buckets! I have these rubberized containers 105mm roll x-ray film used to come in. They have a snap on lid, and are about the size of 1 quart oil cans (remember those?). They're completely reuseable. Then I put a sticker on the top, and write what's in the containers; bolts, nuts, washers, etc. All the containers are in a steel cabinet with sliding doors that also came from an X-Ray dept. I have LOTS of fasteners left over from x-ray equipment that was being removed, or new machines being installed. Most of those are metric however, but are usually stainless steel, and very high quality. In the steel cabinet I have a 3 foot long, 2 foot wide piece of indoor/outdoor carpet; I use it to dump fasteners onto when I'm looking for a particular one/size. Then I use the carpet to "funnel" the fasteners back into the containers. I also have a wooden box for "scrap" fasteners; those are usually used, dirty, or odd ball sized fasteners, and everything goes into the box; nothing gets separated into "nuts-bolts-washers", they're all together. And, I've also got a bunch of aircraft fasteners I got from a neighbor who moved away (Boeing worker). SO......." Hello, I'm Butch, and I'm a fastener addict. I've been a fastener addict for as long as I can remember. I pick up and keep loose fasteners I find lying around. I've embarrassed my family and friends with my fastener addiction. I've had people point and whisper about my persistent fastener need. I'm currently enrolled in a 12 point step recovery program for fastener addiction. I hope to get better." I am Butch/56sedandelivery.
    das858 and like this.
    Joined: Jun 25, 2012
    Posts: 646
    from Salina, KS

    Butch/56...that description deserves a Tech picture.
    I really like the 'carpet turf dump-it-in search & sort tray idea!
  6. squirrel
    Joined: Sep 23, 2004
    Posts: 45,819


    I smile when I'm digging through my bolt collection, and happen across one from that flathead Dodge six that I took apart and scrapped in 1979. Yes, it's an old habit!
    lonestar395 and bct like this.
  7. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 13,328

    from oregon

    I do too, but I can quit any time.:mad:
    I draw the line at Supertanium........look it up.
  8. stanlow69
    Joined: Feb 21, 2010
    Posts: 4,233

    from red oak

    I don`t have a bolt hoarding problem.
  9. Weird.
    I wantwd to start a similar thread but didnt wana get blasted by the trad popo.
    I love to pick,save clean and scavenge girl will laugh at me if I turn around and pick a washer or bolt.
    Says i remind her of her grandma who lived during the depression saving all the fasteners for grandpa.
    I live in the desert and 60 miles to any hardware store...i keep coffee cans of inlaws have 50 gallons of them filled with odd stuff just rusting away...
    I usually have a bucket of molasses filled with bolts washers or random brackets..
    Im addicted.
  10. bct
    Joined: Apr 4, 2005
    Posts: 3,086


    I save all the tall head antique fastners i can get. Makes a difference to me , most wouldn't notice
  11. Problem? Nah, no problem. I'm one of those guys who just can't throw away perfectly good nuts and bolts and washers. The bins were a gift from a friend.I totally refuse to get in my car and drive the 2 miles to get a bolt. Most have been through the molasses bath. Took a few nights sorting and filling the bins but having to look through a can full of bolts just pisses me off.
    michael knight and bct like this.
  12. One of these days I need to sort all my fittings but I've forgotten all the names and sizes, different thread pitches there are. I still sort through a big plastic bin full of all different fittings for the right one.
  13. mgtstumpy
    Joined: Jul 20, 2006
    Posts: 7,981


    2 x buckets, new and used plus numerous other ungraded set up bolts that will be swapped for new ones at some stage in the future. I'll get the new graded ones zinc plated before I do the final assembly. Recently had a clean out and quite a few old bolts and nuts were metal recycled with off cuts.
    All the other ones are plated and tagged in CSPB and ready when the time comes.
  14. Baumi
    Joined: Jan 28, 2003
    Posts: 2,375


    Count me in as a nut and bolt hoarder. I have saved every single useable bolt I ever removed from an old American car I parted out. You only get metric stuff here at a hardware store, all unf and uncbolts must be ordered.That´s expensive and takes time, and automotive stuff is not readily availible, and I have to order that specific part in the US. It takes quite some time to stay organized but afterwards it saves my time when I assemble stuff or have to replace a ripped bolt. There is a place that acid dips and re-zincs old hardware not too far from me. I love to use oem bolts even if the have some rust pitting, but with new zinc coating they look great!
  15. I have been keeping fasteners for over 40 years. When my young-uns were little, I would sit them at the bench with a big pile of unsorted nuts, bolts, etc, and they would put them into piles- "machine screws" ,"self-tappers" , "spring washers", etc, and they would then put them into the right drawer. This kept them amused for hours, and they learned something too.
    For me it's not the 25c that you save by using an old bolt, but the time spent going out of your way to get it, and usually the lack of that bolt, etc, stops work for the day.
    When someone says that their build cost $50,000, and you think "How can you have spent so much, I would have no trouble building that for 1/2 the price", you can bet that a big chunk of that was new fasteners , at a buck more apiece, doesn't take long to add up.
    brad2v likes this.
  16. Only a little OCD with hardware here...



    Posted with an IBM Selectric
  17. brad2v
    Joined: Jun 29, 2009
    Posts: 1,648


    Yep, been squirreling bolts away since I ever started playing with cars 30 plus years ago. And, I still have a pretty good bit of the fastener collection my Grandpa left me. I'm indeed a fastener geek. A few years ago, we lived in a small town in the middle of nowhere (well, not the exact middle, but you could see it from there). I was having a hell of a time finding Phillips machine screws, the local hardware store only kept Robertson head. I'm a partsman by trade, so in an act of frustration I ordered from a supplier 100 each of numbers 6 through 10, from the shortest to 1" in #6 to 2" in #10, pan head and oval head, coarse and fine. Now I have half a cabinet full. I will never have to look for a machine screw again.
  18. junkyardjeff
    Joined: Jul 23, 2005
    Posts: 7,369


    I need to organize my bolt collection to make it easier to find what I am looking for,I did organize the small drawers a few years ago that had the small stuff in them but have not gotten around to the bolts yet.
  19. Model A Gomez
    Joined: Aug 26, 2006
    Posts: 1,212

    Model A Gomez

    Learned that lesson the hard way, I've done several Model A's both stock and modified and when I started I would pull them apart and throw away the original bolts. I was putting back together a stocker and found out that Ford used some specialty bolts, had to go to see a friend who saved everything and dig thru his collection of bolts to find what I needed. Since then I have kept a lot of old bolts and still buy new bolts and nuts. I live in a small town and have a hard time find fine thread and higher grade bolts. Our hardware and farm store stock low grade cheap bolts, if I need a grade 5 or higher bolt I have to drive 30 miles or order them.
  20. jazz1
    Joined: Apr 30, 2011
    Posts: 1,479


    I have saved the nuts and bolts from stripping a few old boat motors. High grade hardware.
    michael knight likes this.
  21. I had 2 spackle buckets full of a 40 year hoard and I went though it all last year. Some was junk and that got thrown away, rusted, stripped, odd ball... out it went. Found some good brass fittings and hose clamps, some jesus clips too.

    I probably salvaged 20% of what I had since I had and some of it was new. One place I worked used Bowman hardware and I glommed a bunch of that along the way.. good stuff.

    Now I have it all in salvaged ESD boxes from work, by size only right now. Everything has been wire brushed and solvent cleaned. I mix the old and new. I have a few Harbor Fright plastic organizers for smaller hardware and one dedicated to anything electrical.

    Things for the Ford like trim screws and small hardware are kept in old prescription bottles that are in cardboard bin boxes. Nice to be able to find something now and then.
    Joined: Apr 28, 2009
    Posts: 541


    My 1932 truck and tudor were stripped shells so I started searching for original fasteners. Still looking for a lot of little parts but have found about 60% of what I need. Never throw away the original parts on any pre war car. Something about the original virgin steel fasteners that new can't duplicate.
    Just my 2 cents .
    PS Still looking for a bunch of 1932 Ford small parts :rolleyes:

    Attached Files:

    brad2v likes this.
  23. GearheadsQCE
    Joined: Mar 23, 2011
    Posts: 2,436


    Butch, I see what you did there,
    I wanted to get in a 12 point program, but Allen told me I have to complete the 6 point one first. So I told him to "Socket to me". Torx me off!
  24. I have a thing for Gr8 fine thread and AN washers.
    I also remember my grandpa handing me a syrup can of used bent nails and a hammer
    and showing me how to straighten them.
    B Bay Barn likes this.
  25. Anxiety and Obsessive-compulsive disorder keep me from doing so. You see, if I need more than 1 bolt and there isn't an other of the same shade of color, thread length, head marking, damaged, undamaged, old, new I can't work with it. :eek: :D
    mkebaird and michael knight like this.
  26. 60 Special
    Joined: Sep 8, 2007
    Posts: 68

    60 Special
    from Omaha Ne.

    Yep, me too! I have leftover chrome plated hardware from 1971 when I built my T bucket, which was all plated (cheap back then). I also worked for a nuke as a machinist for 33 years. They would have these inspections during certain intervals, so they would cleanup and toss stuff in the dumpsters. We would go out and scrounge fasteners and scrap metal after the fact. I have it all stored in 5 gal buckets. I always said when I retired I would sit down and sort it all out. I've been retired since the spring of 2012----- It's still in 5 gallon buckets!
  27. TagMan
    Joined: Dec 12, 2002
    Posts: 6,011


    Not only nuts & bolts, but old springs, too, as well as a lot of other hardware I've saved for the past 55+ years. I have a set of wooden library index card cabinets and have the new fasteners in the drawers by size. I also have cans on used nuts & bolts from anything & everything I've ever disassembled before tossing the main component away.
    I sure wish I could be there to hear what people, especially my kids, have to say when they're cleaning up all my stuff after I die !!
    raymay likes this.
  28. I like your organization. Especially near the end where the sizes are "big" and then "huge". :)
  29. DDDenny
    Joined: Feb 6, 2015
    Posts: 13,328

    from oregon

    AN washers.
    Don't ya just hate it when you absolutely need 8 AN washers to finish a job and all you have is 7.
    People say some of the big box stores have them but they just aren't "the real thing".
    Flowmeister likes this.
  30. 2935ford
    Joined: Jan 6, 2006
    Posts: 3,314


    Here's the deal.......I have been working on cars for a very long time.
    I like to keep, clean and re use old Henry bolts as much as possible. New bolts made today are just not the same but..........and here's the but........seems every time I need a specific size bolt more often than not, I don't have it and have to go buy a "new" one...........why am I keeping all this old stuff? :)
    Johnny Gee and pat59 like this.

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